The official website for European football

Beqaj brilliance sparks Cypriot joy

Published: Thursday 28 August 2008, 0.31CET
Olympiacos 1-0 Anorthosis Famagusta (agg: 1-3)
Goalkeeper Arian Beqaj was the hero as Anorthosis became the first Cypriot club to reach the group stage.
by Vassiliki Papantonopoulou
from Georgios Karaiskakis stadium

Match statistics

OlympiacosAnorthosis

Goals scored1
 
0
Attempts on target1
 
0
Attempts off target0
 
0
Corners0
 
0
Offsides0
 
0
Fouls committed0
 
0
Yellow cards4
 
2
Red cards0
 
0

Standings

 
Published: Thursday 28 August 2008, 0.31CET

Beqaj brilliance sparks Cypriot joy

Olympiacos 1-0 Anorthosis Famagusta (agg: 1-3)
Goalkeeper Arian Beqaj was the hero as Anorthosis became the first Cypriot club to reach the group stage.

Goalkeeper Arian Beqaj was the hero for Anorthosis Famagusta FC as they held their nerve to become the first Cypriot club to reach the UEFA Champions League group stage.

Historic night
Fernando Belluschi got the only goal at a packed Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium in Athens, but with Beqaj in brilliant form, particularly in the second half, Anorthosis ensured their 3-0 first-leg victory a fortnight ago was too much for the Greek champions to overcome. As Temuri Ketsbaia's side made Cypriot football history, Olympiacos had to resign themselves to the fact they will be absent from Europe's top table for the first time since 1997.

Anorthosis impress
With such a mountain to climb, Olympiacos needed an early goal to raise morale but instead they came up against a determined Anorthosis team whose tireless work rate, harrying and boundless energy kept the hosts at a safe distance from Beqaj's goal for most of the first half. Indeed it was Anorthosis who came closer to opening the scoring early on. Olympiacos centre-back Avraam Papadopoulos timed his intervention to perfection to clear from Vincent Laban as he shaped to shoot following fine work by Cédric Bardon.

Second striker
Olympiacos were unable to hit their stride and the opening period ended without any major worries for the visitors. After the break Olympiacos coach Ernesto Valverde brought on Kostas Mitroglou to play up front alongside Darko Kovačević who had looked isolated. Olympiacos pushed up, pumping crosses into the Anorthosis box and firing in shots from distance.

Beqaj brilliance
They finally forced the breakthrough on 54 minutes when Belluschi beat Beqaj with a right-footed strike from outside the area. Duly buoyed, Olympiacos streamed forward but could find no way past Beqaj again as Anorthosis defended in numbers. First the Albanian keeper made a superb double stop from Mitroglou on 57 minutes, then he dived right to turn away Luciano Galletti's strike. On 64 minutes he saved again to deny Belluschi a second goal.

Defensive heroics
Olympiacos were driven to desperate measures and the stress told in the last ten minutes when too often they made the wrong decision in promising attacking positions. With defenders Andreas Constantinou, Nikos Katsavakis and Traianos Dellas leading the resistance, Anorthosis held firm to celebrate an unprecedented night of success for Cypriot football.

Last updated: 28/08/08 10.45CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2009/matches/round=15275/match=303828/postmatch/report/index.html#beqaj+brilliance+sparks+cypriot

Lineups

olympiacos

Olympiacos

anorthosis

Anorthosis

71
NikopolidisAntonis Nikopolidis (GK)
1
BeqajArjan Beqaj (GK)
35
TorosidisVasilis Torosidis
24
A. ConstantinouAndreas Constantinou
18
AntzasParaskevas Antzas
Substitution69
33
DellasTraianos Dellas
21
A. PapadopoulosAvraam Papadopoulos
4
KatsavakisNicos Katsavakis (C)
4
LeonardoLeonardo
Yellow Card83
12
LeiwakabessyJeffrey Leiwakabessy
7
GallettiLuciano Galletti (C)
Yellow Card38
22
OcokoljićPredrag Ocokoljić
6
StoltidisIeroklis Stoltidis
10
Paulo CostaPaulo Costa
Substitution72
20
DuduDudu
Yellow Card23
Substitution46
6
DobrašinovićSiniša Dobrašinović
Yellow Card56
23
LetoSebastian Leto
Yellow Card44
Substitution63
27
BardonCédric Bardon
Yellow Card16
Substitution58
25
BelluschiFernando Belluschi
Goal54
20
LabanVincent Laban
9
KovačevićDarko Kovačević
9
SosinLukasz Sosin
Substitution82

Substitutes

50
KovácPavol Kovác (GK)
30
NagyZóltan Nagy (GK)
2
PatsatzoglouChristos Patsatzoglou
Substitution69
5
NikolaouNikos Nikolaou
Substitution72
8
Óscar GonzálezÓscar González
11
FrousosNikolaos Frousos
11
P. DjordjevićPredrag Djordjević
Substitution63
17
Da Silva FerrazFábio Andrade Da Silva Ferraz
Substitution58
14
ŻewłakowMichał Żewłakow
21
PanagiGeorgios Panagi
22
MitroglouKostas Mitroglou
Substitution46
23
SamarasConstandinos Samaras
Substitution82
30
PantosTasos Pantos
28
GeorgiouGeorgios Georgiou

Coach

Ernesto Valverde (ESP) Temuri Ketsbaia (GEO)

Referee

Herbert Fandel (GER)

Assistant referees

Mike Pickel (GER), Christian Dingert (GER)

Fourth official

Helmut Fleischer (GER)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
  • © 1998-2014 UEFA. All rights reserved.
  • The CHAMPIONS LEAGUE and UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE words, the UEFA Champions League logo and trophy and the UEFA Champions League Final logos are protected by trade marks and/or copyright of UEFA. No use for commercial purposes may be made of such trade marks. Use of UEFA.com signifies your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.